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A Supplication to our moste

Soueraigne Lorde Kynge Henry the Eyght,

Kynge of England /, of Eraunce /,

and of Irelande, &c.

1 M Ost dreade Soueraigne Lorde & most Christen Prynce, / whew I remembre the lamentable & wonder- when I rememfull great blyndnes wherin the most parte of all Eng- „ess in which lande, not onely of the layete, called the temporaltie /, iJ^ltEynTMand but also of the clergie, / haue pytuousely erred and ^SSS wandered many hundereth yeres /, acceptinge /, re- ycara' putynge /, & most vngodly, / erronyousely /, and blyndely /, estemynge the bysshop of Bome to be supreame head ouer & aboue all Christen congregates; and in dyuerse other poyntes snche as be touchynge the necessarye articles of our faithe; I coulde not but I can but

iii Tit i .i marvel why such

meruell how, and by what meanes, suche pestilent errors have been errours and horrible darke blyndenes coulde, or myght, continne. entre /, invade, & ouerflowe this your realme /, & to contynewe so longe in the same /, not espied /, perceyued /, nor repelled. Consideringe, that by all that considering the tyme and space, this your realme (as the most parte of men in thi8 men dyd then iudge and esteame) was well endowed /, rea^ replenyshed /, and furnyshed with many profounde lerned clerk es /, wherof some were bysshops, arche- clerks of both deacows /, deanes /, prebendaries /, parsons /, doctours /, bachelars in deuinite /, & other profounde 1 A six-line ornamental initial letter in the original.

2Z ERRORS SPRING FROM

lerned clerkes in bothe the Vniuersytees, which were /

graue /, sage /, & auncyent fathers. Contemplatinge

and reuoluinge these things in my mynde—not a lytle

i tried to find oat moued /, troubled /, and vexed with the same /—I

the cause of this . .,7ii ,. .i

bbndness, applyed me wtt/i all my powre & dyhgence, exquysytely

to serche & to knowe the originall grounde & cause

end happening to therof. And, in cowclusyon, amowgest other things it

read the fifth - i ,

chapter of ieaiah, cnaunced me to reade m the .v. chapiter of Ezay a proposition that muche lamenteth the captyuite and bondage which coiMmeth & groweth to all people for lacke of knowleage in Godds Worde /; sayeng /, "Therfore commeth my flocke also into captyuite /, because they haue not vnderstandinge /; their glory is famyshed with hunger /, & their pryde marred with thyrste. Therfore gapeth hell and openeth her mouthe meruel1 found that lack ousely wyde." By this text, graciouse Lorde, it apthe cause of ail peareth that all myserable blyndenes, captyuite, & the harm. bondage vnder synne /, commeth for lacke of knowleage

Mar. xij. in Gods Worde. I had forgotten, at that tyme /, that

that Christ said, Christ reproued the Pharasees/, sayeng/, "You erre knowing "the"" not knowinge the Scriptures;" which reproue and rewind rebuke buke shidde haue ben a suffycient admonyckm and b"fnsufficient. doctryne to me, and to all other; wherby we myght haue knowen that all erroure commeth for lacke of But how could vnderstandinge & knowleage in the Scriptures. But from not knowing by what reason, then, coulde there be suche erroure and tnp ures blyndenes for lacke of knowleage in Gods "Worde in There are this your realme, most gracyouse Lorde /, seing there

found clerks and were suche profounde clerkes, & auncyent fathers /, °n the country bysshops, and studentes in the same /, which dyd people.1"*th8 teache & preache vnto the people cowtynually? The But Paul says Apostle Paul, in the .vi. chapiter to Timothe, descrybeth kinds of know- two kyndes of doctrynes; / the one he calleth a godly otfa'doctrine doctryne & a doctryne of helth /; the other he calleth ttehotterunproflt. a proude doctrine, full of vnprofitable questions /, Me stryuynge more for wordes than for godly knowleage /;

WANT OF KNOWLEDGE. 23

"wherof spryngeth envy /, stryffe /, raylings /, euyll

surmysyngs /, & vayne dysputacions of mew with cor

rupte myndes, destytute of the trueth /; which thinke

that lucre is godlynes." This kynde of lernynge and

subtle dysputacyons vnto this daye we call scole _f.om th8 lattor

matters/; from the which Paul commaundeth all Chris- w«TM^tseparata

'' ourselves.

tyans to separate them selues. Soche clerkes, sayeth y. Ti. iij. Paul /, be "euer lernynge /, but neuer atteyne to the knowleage of the trueth." With suche wayne, vngodly, There is too and vnprofitable lerninge /, this your realme, most re- ungodly learning,

.i-i, j ci' i Tit a"d this comes of

doubted Soueraigne, was ouer moche replenyshed the preaching through the preachinge and teachinge of suche scole the Schoolmen, men & subtyll disputers /; otherwise called deceyuers. Which was one of the causes of our myserable blyndnes /, and of dyuerse errours and abuses spronge vp and crept into this your Graces realme. For certeynely, for winch the if the clerkes, of this your Graces realme /, had bene Mame, endowed with true knowleage of Gods Worde /, and because they do /

not sincerely ^

bad also syncerely preached the same /, althoughe preach God's

word.

suche errours and blyndnes had entered into this
realme /; yet they shulde neuer haue so longe con-
tynewed in the same /, but we shulde haue bene
delyuered through the Worde clerely from them. As
Christe saieth: "If you continewe in my wordes /, lo. viij.
then are you my very disciples /, & shall knowe the
trueth /, & the trueth shall delyuer yow /, and make
you free." Therfore, most dread Soueraigne Lorde /,
seinge that all erroure /, spyrytuall blyndnes /, myser- As ail errors

. L spring from a

able captyuite /, and seruyle bondage vnto synne, com- laekofknow-
meth for lacke of knowleage and syncere vnderstandinge scriptures,
in the Holy Scriptures /; and, of the co«trarye parte,/
through the knowleage & syncere vnderstandinge of and through

knowledge of

the Holy Scripture, we knowe God our Father and his them we know
Sonne, Ihesus Christ, our Lorde /, which is elernall Ioa. v,
liffe /; we be also become free from all condempnation Jo. xvij.
of synne. And through the syncere and true know-

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